DeMarcus Helm set to return to Oxford as linebackers coach

Published 4:41 pm Thursday, April 13, 2023

DeMarcus Helm has been waiting for this call for a long time.

The former OHS defensive lineman graduated from the University of Mississippi in 2013 and immediately entered the teaching profession, working as a substitute teacher at Lafayette before taking a permanent job at North Panola in 2015.

After brief stints at North Panola and Grenada, Helm took a position as the defensive line coach and head track coach at Olive Branch High School in 2021.

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The proud Charger alum always sought a reunion with his alma mater however, reaching out to coaches during off-seasons to express his interest in a return to Oxford until he received a call in February that he had been waiting on for nearly a decade.

“Ever since I first started teaching I kind of put out feelers… Every year just about I would kind of tell them ‘if anything opens up just keep me in mind’ and then a few weeks ago, back in February, I heard from Coach Cutcliffe and the rest is history,” Helm said.

Helm said he was overjoyed to receive the call and is eager to get to work with a chance to represent his hometown and alma mater for the first time since graduating from Oxford in 2009.

“[This] is something that I’ve looked forward to since I started coaching and teaching,” Helm said. “I never really had any intention of being a teacher or a coach but I have a lot of teachers in my family. My sister-in-law, she’s the current assistant principal at Lafayette High, my nephew is actually the receivers coach at Lafayette… my grandmother was a teacher for 40 years so it was kind of in me and I fought it for a long time but now that I’m in it I’m just really excited, especially to be home.”

Helm takes over a relatively inexperienced linebackers group that is burdened with a great deal of responsibility in Oxford’s 3-3-5 defensive scheme.

The Chargers will have three first-year starters at linebacker next season following the departure of seniors Alex Sanford, Martavis Blackmon and Ty’K Cohran, who combined for 251 tackles and 11 sacks last season.

Oxford opens their Spring practice schedule on April 24 before kicking off their regular season on the road against Lafayette on August 25.